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Would The 2018 Mississippi State Football Team Beat The 2014 Team?

STARKVILLE, MS - NOVEMBER 11: Nick Fitzgerald #7 of the Mississippi State Bulldogs carries the ball during the second half of an NCAA football game against the Alabama Crimson Tide at Davis Wade Stadium on November 11, 2017 in Starkville, Mississippi. (Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images)
STARKVILLE, MS - NOVEMBER 11: Nick Fitzgerald #7 of the Mississippi State Bulldogs carries the ball during the second half of an NCAA football game against the Alabama Crimson Tide at Davis Wade Stadium on November 11, 2017 in Starkville, Mississippi. (Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images) /
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Could this Mississippi State football team beat the one from the legendary 2014 season?

The Mississippi State football team is preparing for what could be one of the greatest seasons in school history. Despite having a first year head coach, MSU has everything it needs to succeed at a high level this year.

On offense, MSU has a star returning quarterback, two steady and quick running backs, a strong offensive line, and enough pass catching options to make things work. On defense, the Bulldogs will feature one of the best defensive fronts in the country, a talented linebacking corps, and a good enough defensive backfield to slow down opponents.

Fresh off of a 9 win season, Mississippi State has a theoretical path to 9 or more wins this year. It’s not completely absurd to say that MSU could win 10 games this season when considering everything, but it is still something a bold prediction to make.

But, ignoring all of that, could this team beat one of the best to ever wear Maroon and White?

What happened in 2014 and why does this matter?

The Bulldogs accomplished incredible feats back during the 2014 college football season. Mississippi State rose to historic heights, knocked down several tough opponents, and won 10 games by the time it was all said and done. However, looking back, it felt as if the 2014 team underachieved a bit.

And that’s because of how the season ended. Dan Mullen and the Mississippi State Bulldogs lost three of their final four games that year and did so in frustrating fashion. MSU raced off to a 9-0 start going into Tuscaloosa but stalled against the Crimson Tide. From there, the Bulldogs lost against Ole Miss and Georgia Tech by a combined 29 points.

That’s typically not how you want to end a season.

But the 2014 team was still really good. And because of the standard that they set during the run to being the No. 1 team in the nation for half the season, every other team that comes along will draw some sort of comparison to them until a new standard is set. And with everything that the 2018 team has coming together for this season, this comparison will happen quite a bit.

Some of us started to make this comparison pretty early on last season with the 2017 team. And recently, ESPN’s Peter Burns has brought this discussion up for the 2018 season.

Who wins between the Mississippi State football team and the Mississippi State football team?

At the end of the day, the way of determining this is based on hypotheticals and projections. It’s impossible to replicate this in its entirety. Yes, you could do something like a simulation, but that’s not really going to solve this.

The ultimate point of this discussion is to bring up and break down exactly how these teams compare and how Mississippi State has developed over time. In 2018, Mississippi State has several better pieces and units on its team than it did in 2014. They may not all be radical and significant upgrades, but there are several improvements across the board.

The Bulldogs have come a long way since the 2014 season. The post Dak Prescott era hasn’t always been the most enjoyable in certain moments.

However, dating back to 2014, the Bulldogs have won at least 9 games three different times within four years. That’s certainly a good thing and something to be proud of. Going into this next season, it’s definitely reasonable to say that the 2018 might be better than the 2014 team. It’s not unreasonable to claim that the Bulldogs could get another 9 win season this year, bringing that total up to four seasons within five years.

Next. 18 Thoughts On The Upcoming 2018 Season. dark

When it comes to the heart of the discussion, I would agree that the 2018 team definitely has potential to be better than the 2014 team. That may not translate directly to wins, there’s plenty of questions about how things will play out in the SEC. However, all signs point to this team being an incredibly complete one.